This article is from the Baby Proofing FAQ, by Sandra Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org with numerous contributions by others.
From: Mary Csernica
In article <email@example.com>, firstname.lastname@example.org (Marie Goldenberg) wrote:
> We need to put gates at the top of 2 stairways, plus one in an open
> doorway (no door, just a passageway) between the kitchen and living room.
> Several people have told me not to put the swing-out type at the tops of
> stairs, so I guess the sliding type are the only ones to use.
> 1. Looks like the sliding type must all be removed to walk through. Is
> this true?
> 2. Someone at the Baby Superstore told me that none of the gates are
> 'approved' for stairtop use - something about the manufacturers being
> afraid to make this claim for fear of liability suits. Are there any
> that are actually approved for stairways?
> 3. Because of the way the stair rails go, the first gate I bought was too
> tall and would not fit. Looks like a 24" tall gate would fit - are there
> any out there?
> 4. A neighbor who has the same floorplan said theirs was (he thought) a
> Safety First; and it attaches using hardware, in such a way that it fits
> on the front of the newel posts, rather than between them. Anyone know
> where I can find one of these (the neighbor didn't remember)?
> Any general recommendations for/against a particular gate?
> ...Mom to soon-to-be-mobile 'Fang'...
I don't know what your floor plan is like, but we have a split level
home where the stairs are pretty much part of the main living area, so we
wanted to _be sure_ that whatever we put would be safe. Since it's split
level, the whole staircase area is really two staircases wide (one up, one
down). And there's just a metal bannister between. Here's what we did:
First we bought some pegboard and tied it in several places to the
metal bannister so Peter wouldn't get his head stuck or fall through. Then
we basically built a half door: we nailed piece of panelling to a frame
built of 1x4's, screwed a small 1x4 into the wall, and hinged the two
together. The door is just slightly wider than the staircase going down,
so it hits the bannister/pegboard when closed. There's a hook and eye on
the bottom of the back side to hold it closed.
We then use a cheap pressure-type gate on the half of the staircase
that goes up. This is wedged between the wall and the pegboard.
I don't know if this makes sense to you, but if you want more
information, let me know.